Chelsea planning next move after Mudryk signing as Potter ‘relieved’

Chelsea vs Crystal Palace in pictures

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Graham Potter has refused to rule out the possibility of Chelsea making further January signings after the capture of Mykhaylo Mudryk was officially confirmed by the Blues on Sunday afternoon. The Ukraine international winger has joined the west Londoners from Shakhtar Donetsk for around £88million and was paraded to his new fans at half-time during Chelsea’s home win over Crystal Palace.

Mudryk’s arrival marked Chelsea’s fifth signing of the January window, with the 22-year-old joining Joao Felix, Benoit Badiashile, David Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos in moving to Stamford Bridge in recent weeks. Potter has since revealed that Chelsea are still planning to look for the right players to strengthen their squad between now and the end of the month, although the Blues manager stopped short of expanding on any specific targets.

“We’ve got to be, not necessarily careful, but you’ve got to understand we’ve got 10 or 11 players unavailable and you can’t just sign players to replace those because then you’d have a squad of 30 and that is a problem,” said Potter in his post-match press conference after Sunday’s win over Palace.

“So you have to do the right thing and look at what the right solutions are. Sometimes they are not aligned completely as you’d like them because the January window is complicated, but always my job is to try to support the club, make the right decisions, and help the team improve.”

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Potter also admitted that he breathed a sigh of relief as the final whistle blew at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, with Chelsea ending their four-game winless streak by claiming all three points at the expense of Palace thanks to Kai Havertz’s decisive second-half goal.

“I would be lying if I said I wasn’t relieved because it’s nice to get a win,” explained the Chelsea boss. “I thought we played better than getting no points against Fulham. And when you get a red card for Joao Felix, who is the last person you think you’d get a red card, you think, ‘What have we done here?’ in terms of getting luck, but you can’t rely on that.

“You have to keep going and you have to deal with the bad times, deal with the tough situations, accept the criticism that comes your way and take responsibility. That’s what we’ve tried to do.

“The players have suffered, of course. It’s not nice. That is why it’s important they enjoy the win today, the three points, and it gives us a shot in the arm for the weekend.”

Sunday’s result saw Chelsea climb to 10th in the Premier League table, although the Blues remain some way adrift of being able to challenge for a top-four finish at the end of the season as it stands. They are currently 10 points behind fourth-placed Manchester United and five short of Tottenham in fifth, with Potter desperately hoping for his new arrivals to make a positive impact with 19 matches left to play before the campaign draws to a close.

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